tv CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield CNN September 5, 2020 8:00am-9:00am PDT
september served as americans enjoy their holiday weekend. new concerns that a spike in cases could be coming. playing defense, president trump still venting over a report that paints him as disrespectful to members of the community. we have new cnn reporting in minutes. joe biden speaking out about how she and her husband will tackle education in the country. my sitdown with the former second lady. hi, everyone.
i'm in for fredricka whitfield. we begin this hour with new fiery protests erupting overnight. hundreds taking to the street of rochester, new york, clashing for a third straight night. officers firing pepper balls and tear gas as they lit fires and threw rocks during the demonstration. the protests erupting after the release of body cam video showing rochester police pinning down daniel prude having a mental health episode and naked when he was detained back in march. he stopped breathing and he later died. medical examiners have ruled his death a homicide. president trump is also weighing in. the president retweeting a video of protesters shouting at restaurant patrons in rochester. paulo sandoval is there. kevin liptake is at the white house. the president seemed to be kubling down on his law and order message again.
it comes as the white house is banning racial sensitivity training. what are you learning about that? >> this was something of an under the radar memo that was sent yesterday afternoon by the president's budget chief. it really seems to codify the president's dismissive use of systemic racism. they're directing federal agencies to revamp their racial sensitivity training programs. it has come to the president's attention that executive branch agencies have spent millions of taxpayer dollars training government workers to have antiamerican propaganda. the president has directed me to unfund these. the president has raled against cancel culture. we've seen protests prompted by
policing incidents and systemic racism. we've seen him fall squarely on the side of violence. he's fallen on that aspect without looking at the questions of what precipitated the violence in the first place, african-americans or larger questions of structural racism. the president is trying to amplify the move. he's been retweeting several accounts. he said this is a sicness that cannot continue. that's a major question in the memo. it doesn't cite any specific examples of these trainings taking praise. it's not clear what specifically the president is trying to end. officials haven't necessarily said what prompted the memo to go out. in the memo all that's cited are press reports. now it's not clear even what that is. the president hasn't cited those
press reports. i will say fox news has been covering this over the last several weeks. the president has been known to watch that channel. >> it does appear he's doing this for a certain audience and not trying to calm tensions that are already high in the country, especially since there aren't that many details in this proposal. paolo, you were there on the ground in rochester. what's the latest you are seeing there? >> bianna, another wave of protests as they described there were 2,000 people who gathered at a nearby park. earlier the park bearing the name of martin luther king. as they normally do, the march turned into a protest taking to the streets. police this morning telling us on two occasions they had to use pepper balls and also tear gas to try to disperse the crowds from commercial grade fireworks that were being shot at them,
rocks, bottles being hurled at them. in an attempt to disburse the crowd they used, like i said, pepper balls and other agents to try to do that. at the end of the night there were three officers that sustained minor injuries. we should point out a certain cross section of that protest did appear to in essence chase away local diners. those videos, we've seen them this morning, even shared by the commander in chief this morning, retweeted at one point. we should point out that was a small number compared to the roughly 2,000 demonstrators that were actually taking to the streets yesterday, bianna. >> another american city where there's a night of unrest. there may be a reason the president is wanting to focus on this as opposed to something else in the news. kevin, you have some new reporting on the details of that bombshell "atlantic" article that said president trump disparaged dead american soldiers, called them losers and
suckers in a visit to france in 2018. what are you learning? >> yeah, even as the president continues to very angrily deny that article and everything that's in it, some of the details are being borne out by our own reporting. speaking to someone who's familiar with the president's comments today we can report that the president has actually repeatedly questioned why some americans served in vietnam. specifically he's asked why they department learn how to exploit the system so that they couldn't go to vietnam? of course, the president received a draft deferment for bone spurs during that conflict. the president has also, we're learning, generally questioned the point of going to war in iraq and afghanistan. those are wars the president has very publicly said were mistakes. behind the scenes the president has wondered aloud what did they get out of it. the president has, of course, denied the suggestion in that article that he doesn't respect american service men and women. he said yesterday they're all
heroes. it's hard to believe how they could do it. the level of bravery, he said, that they're absolute heroes. the general gist of that article is still being borne out by both what the president has said behind the scenes and some of the president's own comments, well-documented comments over the last several years. >> desicable comments by any american, much less coming from the president of the united states. we should note his network of choice, fox news, has also confirmed that reporting as well. kevin liptack and paulo sandoval, thank you very much. mart huertling, thank you for being with us. let me get you to discuss the impact these reports have on members of the service like you who served this country for so many years. >> i think many are seeing the disconnect in culture and
thought process, bianna. the president is very transformational -- i'm sorry, very transactional. that's reported many times. he is a win-lose kind of guy. he makes the deal. he tries to profit from various things. as he's talked about the military, you notice he always talks about the monetary aspects. paying more, giving more funding, pulling people out because other nations, our allies, aren't according the funds as he believes they should be. it's all monetary transactions much like a businessman would, many business men would. the military is trained in transformational leadership which means you're contributing to something. an organization, it's a society. you do things for others. you take others' feelings and beliefs into account. you try to build a large organization that has the same mission objectives and pay the monetary aspect of that is now
very important to most people who serve. they are in it for service to the nation, and that really is the disconnect between what the president is saying and what he's doing versus what the military is saying and what they're doing. >> yeah. such a transactional mindset and obviously that is the opposite of what people go into the military for, right? they get back and they protect the country they love. let me ask you, on friday the president attacksed his former chief of staff after that atlantic article said the president questioned why anyone would enter military service while standing with a four star general at his son's grave at arlington national cemetery. on friday without saying he believed kelly was behind the report, president trump called the retired four star marine general unfit for the job. let's take a listen. >> i know jonquelly. he was with me. didn't do a good job. had no temperament. ultimately was petered out. he was exhausted. he was totally exhausted. he wasn't even able to function in the last number of months.
he was not able to function. he was sort of a tough guy. by the time he got eaten up in this world it's a different world that he was used to, he was unable to function. and i told him, john, you're going to have to go. please give me a letter of resignation, and we did that. and now he goes out and bad mouths. now there are people that are jealous, there are people that are upset that they're not here anymore. >> general, what do you make of the president's attacks on general kelly? are you surprised that we have yet to hear from him, that he has not come forward yet to dismiss or confirm that these conversations took place though i would believe if they did not take place, he would probably have come out and denied them at least. >> most people would, bianna. that's a critical issue. a lot of people don't understand the culture of the military. kelly was serving in a civilian capacity. he is the secretary of homeland security and he has a military
mind set. you don't insult your boss in public. you make your feelings known in private. that's something rammed into every member of the military. you don't publicly insult your boss if you're wearing the uniform or served in the administration. i think the presidentkelly. i think he's trying to get him to do something. kelly is trying to be professional in nature and unfortunately i'm not sure i could be as professional. i know jonquelly. i served with him, too. we were in combat together. he's one tough guy. i don't think the president's comments on him are accurate at all. >> i would imagine he does have thick skin given what he's been through in his life. of course, when somebody is talking about and disparaging one's own son from the mother's perspective and your own, that's quite a different situation. let me end by asking you about what really stood out to me in this piece. it was all abhorrent, but what really triggered a nerve in me
was the way the president was described in talking about wounded veterans. in an exchange where he was trying to plan a military parade in 2018, he reportedly said nobody wants to see that. obviously those who are disfigured by serving their country. we are so fortunate to live in a country where so many of our troops do not get killed on the battlefield anymore because there's great medicine, great technology. obviously there are repercussions. they are wounded. they are wounded for life. what is your message to those 5 million wounded vets in this country who have to read something like that from this president? >> it's difficult and that's the thing that struck me the most, too. we see eye to eye on this, bianna. i have a box behind me that has 253 cards on it with pictures from soldiers i served with who made the ultimate sacrifice. i don't have a box of all the soldiers who were wounded, lost limbs, who were burned but i do
have a memory. it was the toughest day i ever spent. a young soldier when i was in europe was shipped back with 80% of his body burned and a triple amputee. his family and the doctors knew he was going to die. i had a discussion with his wife to request that she dedicate his organs, basically giving the organs to others. it was the toughest conversation i ever had and the hardest memory i can remember. those are the kinds of people that mr. trump is insulting, and it's vile and disgusting in my view. so i feel the same way about it as you do. and god bless all those that are wounded. i receive many messages from wounded veterans after speaking on cnn the other night and they feel the same way. >> not only physical wounds and they are heroes. thank you so much for your service. thank you, all of our veins, for your service. >> thank you. coming up, labor day weekend
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as many americans gather with family and friends, minimizing cases. while frientrends are going in right direction, case numbers in 15 states are not. now dr. anthony fauci is warning americans to stay vigilant especially during this holiday weekend. >> we want to make sure that in -- all over the country, particularly in the vulnerable states that are starting to show an uptick, that we abide by the public health mandates and rules that we talk about all the time over the weekend and not, in essence, have the same kind of surges that we have seen
following other holiday weekends like the fourth of july and memorial day. >> let's go now to new jersey where the state is allowing movie theaters, malls, indoor dining to now reopen. evan mcmorrow santoro is there. are people listening? >> bianna, that is the central question of this labor day weekend here in new jersey. i'm outside a movie theater in hoboken that is going to be open for customers today. you can get tickets, buy them online. let me show you how it works to go to movies under the new rules. here at this movie theater you can come, buy tickets in advance and if you show up here it says right on the front, you have to make sure you haven't had any symptoms. if you have had them, they'll give you a refund. if you choose to go into the theater, you can wear a mask, sit with the people you bought
tickets with but you have to distance from each other and the cap of people in the theater allowed is 25%. that's the same thing for restaurants. back to your original question. that is what people are looking at here in new jersey. governor phil murphy said in a press conference yesterday if he doesn't see people abiding by the rules, he said the state has allowed indoor dining and if things like the caps aren't abided by, masks, he'll shut the whole thing down again to where they couldn't be open again. >> that state like so many others in the northeast suffered a lot at the beginning of the virus. you have to be vigilant to make sure those cases do not continue to rise. thank you so much. joining me now to discuss is dr. derek hass. emergency medical physician at columbia medical center. thank you for joining us on a
holiday weekend. we saw previous spikes. how concerned are you that the same could result following labor day? >> we're very concerned. i think what happens at the end of a summer or end of a holiday weekend, people want to celebrate. they want to ignore the virus for a while. they want to have a bar bhe cue. they want to collect with people, greater than 10, 20 or 30 people. if you are smart this weekend, you won't see the effects when we open schools in a month or two and the kids are back and they have to come home again because we're seeing the spikes we see after the holiday weekends two, three, four weeks down the line. >> my kids are going back to cool next week. we know the number of americans wearing masks has declined. are you concerned that that coupled with a long holiday weekend could potentially lead to an uptick in infections? >> yes, absolutely. those uptick in infections will
affect everybody, not just the most vulnerable. they'll affect children and adults. eventually those will get to our parents and grandparents. we know mask wearing works. no reason not to do it. we can go to an indoor dining restaurant. i don't understand why people won't embrace mask wearing where it's the thing that will get us back to our new normal. >> not that difficult to put a mask on. the president is on the verge of putting this pandemic behind us. he continues to say a vaccine is near. first, listen to how the president sees things and how dr. fauci is responding. >> by the way, we're rounding the corner. we're rounding the corner on the virus. >> i'm not sure what he means. there are certain states doing well in the sense that the case numbers are coming down. our concern right now is that there are a number of states particularly, for example, the dakotas, montana, michigan,
minnesota, others who are starting to have an upnick what we call percent positive of testing. >> a bit of mixed messaging there that we've seen a lot of lately between the two of them. you know the cdc has recently alerted states to prepare for a vaccine as early as late october. pfizer ceo saying it might be out with a vaccine that's safe to use as early as october. that has caused a lot of concern about this being politicized or rushed. dr. fauci said an october vaccine is highly unlikely but possible. how are you all looking at this? >> look, my colleagues and myself are sitting here trying to invoke public trust in the data that we have, in the public health practices that we know work. what we don't need is a vaccine that comes out too early or not enough data to show it's effective in all populations.
we are all looking for a vaccine. we are pro vaccine physicians and we want to get the vaccine behind us. we want to make sure the public trusts the information we're giving them. if we give too many high hopes too early, it puts us in a difficult position to both be like, hey, wait for the data. when it comes out and we say go, you should really take this vaccine. >> on the subject of data, dr. fauci said these trials have independent safety, monitoring boards, they are data driven and focused. because it becomes focused it's not in our interests to manipulate it and over sell it. they over sold the effectiveness of convalescent plasma. should we be so sure about this? >> remember that the eua invoked the convalescent plasma over sold data not put out by a
pharmaceutical company. they are in the interests of putting out a vaccine that's safe and effective but more importantly that people will take. we want to make sure we don't take press releases or public statements for data and science and look for the research behind why they are out. we need to be critical, everybody does, about the science we're being told. unfortunately we can't trust all of the messaging coming out of the podium. >> we will be all doing our own research. dr. derek hass, thank you so much. election day is less than two months away. coming up, dr. jill biden goes after education secretary betsy devos and the trump administration. >> we are in donald trump's america and there's just so much chaos. and i feel that, you know, educators don't know what to do, students don't know what to do. we've got the retinol that gives you results in one week.
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the 2020 presidential race is officially underway in a key swing state. the firsthandful of ballots for the general election have now been returned to north carolina's state board of elections. more than 650,000 people requested mail-in ballots in north carolina which allows no excuse absentee voting. this as the joe biden campaign lays out what it sees as its path to victory with election day 59 days away. i had a chance to speak with dr. jill biden earlier this week about what she hopes to accomplish if she becomes a first lady. >> as a teacher, mother, grandmother, i mean, i just -- i just feel that, you know, we are
in donald trump's america and there's just so much chaos. i feel that, you know, educators don't know what to do, students don't know what to do. >> the education secretary has been asked what is the plan. >> yeah, what is the plan? >> and there doesn't seem to be one. >> no. >> does that surprise you? what would a plan look like in a biden administration? >> you know, no, it doesn't surprise me coming from betsy devos. i mean, i don't think she ever felt invested in america's public schools. she didn't have a strategy, trump didn't have a strategy. there are so many things that joe already has planned to do, and that includes replacing the secretary of education with somebody who has been in the public schools, knows what it's like to be a public school educator as i was and listens to
the teacher. joe biden will listen to the educators. he's already planning to give funds to the schools so they have enough supplies. he's already talking about handling some of the broadband issues and investing in broadband so that every child across america will have access to the internet. >> we know the down side of children not being in school. what is your response to those who argue that those repercussions aren't weighed as much as the coronavirus is? >> i hear it from educators all the time. jill, we need more mental health support across the board. just like you're saying, now children are home. domestic violence has increased. child abuse has increased. children are dealing with anxiety and then now when children come back into the schools, you know, they're bringing all of that with them. >> this picture went viral of a 5-year-old boy in georgia who
had just broken down into tears while he was learning online. what is your message to boys like this one, his mother, of course he speaks for millions? >> my message is when joe biden is elected, that he won't be sitting there crying. he will be sitting there with his laptop with a smile on his face. joe has empathy. he understands what families are going through. >> how often do you talk to your husband about your views on education? >> probably every day. >> i'm sure you didn't think you would be this vocal about something, but here we are in the midst of a pandemic and this is your area of expertise. if he does become president and is elected, can we expect you will weigh in more and be a voice for this administration or at least with him on the issue of education? >> joe has his advisers but i'm his spouse. he has always supported my career and obviously i'm supporting his career and so, you know, he listens to what i
have to say, but i'm not going to be in an adviser role. it's just what a husband and a wife do. they talk about what they see, what they want different, what they -- what should be changed. so that's my role. >> you have a busy role because you would like to work as a teacher. >> yes. yes. >> at first i think you would be actually going to school? i know you did it as second lady. >> that's right. >> a bit more pressure as first lady. why is that more important to you to continue? >> i think it's important because, first of all, it's my career. it's my passion. and i want to continue to teach, and i feel i really want to lift up the profession of educators because i think previous to this pandemic, you know, i think educators were feeling like they weren't appreciated but now
through this pandemic when parents have had to take a lot of the role of helping kids with their school work, parents are saying, yhey, you know what, ths is hard. we thought teachers left at 3. that's not the case. you know, this is what i've heard today from teachers saying they -- parents have their cell phone numbers, students do. they're calling them all hours of the day. >> they're teachers, they're therapists, they're everything, right? >> yeah. and you never leave your students in the classroom. they're with you, you know, wherever you go. you're thinking, how could i make something different for a student? gee, i should have said this to a student whereby well, for me, about their writing, their essay. you're always thinking. >> teachers are thinking about a syllabus. that has to talk about a pandemic and racial inequality
and injustice in the country. what is your message to the black students that their lives matter? >> i think people, especially today, need to have hope that things are going to get better. joe biden will heal this country. bianna, you heard my speech i made at brandy wine high school. joe brought our family together and healed our family and he will do the same for this nation. that's who joe biden is. >> my final question is just your response to his powerful speech yesterday denouncing violence. i was struck by what he said. you know me. do i look like a radical socialist with a soft spot for rioters which is a label the president of the united states tried to put on him. you know him better than anyone else. why was that important for him to say? what should america's children
take from that? >> i think the administration is trying to paint joe in that way, but what he was saying is that, you know, protesting, yes, that's an american right, but not violence. not violence. you can see jacob blake's parents led that peaceful protest through the streets and that's what it should be, peaceful, not violent. and i think that was joe's message. >> our thanks to dr. jill biden for that in depth interview. >> her husband joe biden is addressing concerns that president trump may announce a vaccine around election day. >> do you trust that in a situation where we're in now that the public health experts and scientists will get the last word on the efficacy of a vaccine? >> if past is prolog, they will
not. they'll be muzzled. they'll be suppressed. they will be side lined because he's looking at an election coming up in less than 60 days and he's grasping for whatever he can get to pretend he has been a leader on this issue when he has not. >> let's say there is a vaccine approved and distributed before the election, would you get it? >> well, i think that's going to be an issue for all of us. i will say that i would not trust donald trump and it would have to be a credible source of information that talks about the efficacy and the reliability of whatever he's talking about. i will not take his word for it. >> you can watch dana's full interview tomorrow morning on cnn's state of the union. and we have the stories of joe biden and donald trump and their
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ask your doctor about nucala at home. find your nunormal with nucala. amid the coronavirus pandemic, a cyber security attack brought miami-dade to a stand still. the student is a junior at a miami high school. the fbi, secret service are part of the investigation. marco rubio is asking for department of homeland security briefing saying hostile actors, including foreign cyber criminals, appear to also have attacked the school system to undermine the lives of americans. joining me is the author of "rigged." a fellow at yale university, david sheimer. thank you for joining me on this
troubling story. miami-dade school police say they've traced some of the cyber attacks back to i.p. addresses in russia, ukraine, china and iraq y. would they want to attack the servers of a school district? >> that's exactly right. what we know so far is eight of the cyber attacks that have been detected originated from a 16-year-old and many others from countries you named. there are many questions as to why and how our foreign adversaries are seeking to undermine our democracy and a central aspect is to be able to educate our citizens in our schools. but perhaps more broadly as our elections approach, i think that this attack should serve as a really glaring reminder at how vulnerable our infrastructure is. as idea tail in "rigged," russian intelligence is inside
our election infrastructure across the country. john brennan said they had the capability to alter the vote tally. whether it's our school districts, election systems, our adversaries had access to our infrastructure. we should be working as hard and diligently to make sure the systems are, therefore, secure. >> on the issue of schools because i want to get to the issue of vote, i want to get to so many students learning online, how concerned should parents be that this type of thing could happen again? what can be done to prevent further disruptions in many schools? >> so i think that as with anything connected to the internet, there always has to be the concern about vulnerabilities, about exposure and i think that it falls on districts to secure with dhs and with the fbi in recognizing that part of what, for example, russia is after is to show the world that our democratic system
is not actually functioning properly, that we're not able to handle the crises in front of us and the coronavirus pandemic is perhaps the leading crisis of our moment and, therefore, if we are unable to function as a society to contain this disease while also educating our citizens, that degrades america's image in the eyes of the world and it limits our ability to function as a society that others would seek to emulate. >> and in terms of a government response to any foreign interference, i want to get your reaction to the report that the dhs, the department of homeland security, actually withheld information and a memo that focused on information that russia was trying to attack joe biden's campaign by handing out and distributing misinformation on his mental health. if they blocked this, what does that say about how this country is responding to potential foreign attacks, especially
those that may come from russia? >> so it doesn't say anything good. a clear pattern of foreign election interference is the greatest advantage democracies under siege have is to know what is happening to the best of their ability in real time to provide facts to citizens so citizens can be aware of efforts to manipulate them and resist them as best they can. if our government, therefore, withholds that information, it limits the ability of our democracy to defend itself as russia attempts to take advantage of vulnerabilities. if the current president is saying that there are mental health issues with his opponent or if he's saying that the election mail-in voting will be rigged, that is fertile ground for russia to seek to amplify that messaging in order to degrade and disrupt our democratic system and, therefore, i would hope that citizens would be looped into those efforts by russia as best
as possible to hold a stable election in the interest of every american or at least it should be. >> quickly, on a scale of 1 to 10, if 5 is the extent of damage, what do you expect the damage they're going to inflect be in 2020? >> so i'm quite rohr which hwor. we know that that's happening. we know that facebook and twitter have already taken down a covert russian network of accounts. we know as is often the case that there is usually more to uncover as time goes on. what we see now will be the tip of the iceberg and finally we also know, as i mentioned, that russia didn't go as far as it could in 2016. russia did have the cape fwoilt sabotage our infrastructure. >> thank you so much for your
outspoken critic of russian president vladimir putin was poisoned with a chemical nerve agent and demanded the russian government explain itself. here's what president trump said about it at a press conference friday. >> we haven't had any proof yet, but i will take a look. it is interesting that everybody is always mentioning russia. i don't mind you mentioning russia, but i think probably china at this point is a nation that you should be talking about much more so than russia because the things that china is doing are far worse if you take a look at what's happening with the world. >> an unbelievable response yet again. it's just the latest example of the president declining to condemn russia and its president for authoritarian actions. other world leaders, including german chancellor angela merkel and british prime minister boris johnson offered strong condemnation of the attack. still ahead, heartbreaking
scenes across america. police going door to door to evict families during the pandemic. how strangers are lending a helping hand. that's coming up. ♪ you can't give them everything they want. but you can find lots of things they'll love at petsmart's labor day sale. get a $10 bonus card with every $50 purchase. petsmart.
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we begin this labor day weekend with a sobering projection in the fight against covid-19 and a new warning from health officials as many americans gather with family and friends. a key model now predicts that the country could surpass nor than 410,000 coronavirus deaths by the end of this year. that means between now and january 1st an additional 224,000 americans could die from covid-19, though that figure has been disputed by many doctors, we should tell you. just this friday alone, the u.s. added more than 50,000 new cases, and now there are new fears of a holiday surge. the nation's top infectious disease expert, dr. anthony fauci, is encouraging americans to stay vigilant this weekend and to keep gatherings small. this as the u.s. surgeon general floats the date, november 1st, for when states should be ready for a potential vaccine, a goal most public health experts say though possible isn't likely. for more on case trends across the country, let's go to cnn's tom